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Midlothian in Chesterfield County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads

 
 
Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 5, 2010
1. Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads Marker
Inscription. Local Coal Mining in the 18th and 19th Centuries

Outcroppings of coal along the south bank of the James River in what is now Powhatan County were discovered circa 1700. A hunter from the nearby Huguenot settlement, Manakintown, dislodged lumps of coal as he slid down the riverbank to retrieve his quarry. Soon, nearby landowners began searching the area for coal outcroppings and deposits.

The earliest record of coal mined in the United States was that of a coal pit operated on the headwaters of Falling Creek near present Midlothian in 1737. Among local collieries working in the coal basin in the 18th and 19th centuries were Black Heath, Clover Hill, Cunliffe’s, Etna, Gowrie, Green Hole, Mid-Lothian, Moody-Johnson, Trabue’s and Salle's.

The Mid-Lothian Coal Mining Company

The Mid-Lothian Coal Mining Company was chartered in 1835 on a 404 acre tract by the heirs of William Wooldridge. The coal seam here was approximately 36 feet thick and 700 feet deep. Wooldridge issued stock to raise funds for machinery, construction and the sinking of shafts. There were four shafts, 11 by 11 feet square producing about 1 million bushels of coal yearly. The Mid-Lothian shaft (later known as the Pump Shaft), one of the most productive, was flooded following a disastrous explosion in 1855 that killed
Mid-Lothian Coal Mining Company Stock image. Click for full size.
Virginia Historical Society, 1866
2. Mid-Lothian Coal Mining Company Stock
55 miners. After several unsuccessful attempts to pump out and rework this once preeminent shaft, it was abandoned.
 
Erected 2009 by Chesterfield Heritage Alliance, Chesterfield County Parks & Recreation.
 
Location. 37° 29.5′ N, 77° 38.617′ W. Marker is in Midlothian, Virginia, in Chesterfield County. Marker can be reached from North Woolridge Road 0.3 miles south of Walton Park Road. Click for map. This marker is located along the multi-use trail in the Mid-Lothian Mines Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 13301 North Woolridge Road, Midlothian VA 23114, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads (about 500 feet away); a different marker also named Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail Roads (approx. ¼ mile away); Midlothian Coal Mines (approx. 0.8 miles away); Salisbury (approx. 0.8 miles away); Union Raid On Coalfield Station (approx. 0.8 miles away); Winfree Memorial Baptist Church (approx. one mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Midlothian.
 
More about this marker.
Mid-Lothian Mines Park Trail image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 5, 2010
3. Mid-Lothian Mines Park Trail
On the bottom is an image of "Mid-Lothian Coal Mining Company Stock 1866. Courtesy of Virginia Historical Society."

On the right are photos with the caption, "Iron ladle and crucible that were used in the coal mining process. Images courtesy of Chesterfield Historical Society of Virginia."
 
Also see . . .
1. Mid-Lothian Mines & Rail Roads Foundation. (Submitted on June 6, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
2. Mid-Lothian Mines and Rail. Chesterfield Heritage Alliance, Virginia (Submitted on June 6, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. Colonial EraIndustry & CommerceNatural ResourcesRailroads & StreetcarsSettlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 867 times since then and 18 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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